Tennis off to a strong start at Stritch

Friday, December 13, 2013 8:25:00 PM

by Paige Quiñones, ’14

This fall marked a big year for Stritch as the University welcomed new sports teams, including men's and women's tennis. As the former assistant coach for the tennis team at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and a former Division I tennis player at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay, head Coach Mark Goldin brings diverse experience to Stritch's tennis program. Assisting Goldin is Orsolya Golovics, who hails from Hungary and used to play tennis for Northern Arizona University.

Women's Tennis

This fall, the teams competed in the team format. The women's team played a total of six dual matches where they finished 5-1. One of those wins was to Ashford University (Clinton, Iowa), which is ranked 20th in the nation. The men's team played two dual matches and finished 2-0. The team’s spring season kicks off on Jan. 9 when they will play in the singles format with a total of 19 matches planned for both the women's and men's teams.

“Throughout this season I was able to shape these athletes and see them grow as players and people, but the best part was being able to watch them grow together as a team,” Goldin said.

Goldin’s main focus as a coach is to instill his players with mental toughness as he pushes them to compete at a high level.

“The toughest part to master of any sport isn't the physical requirement, but the mental aspect,” Goldin said.

Men's Tennis

Stritch was successful in recruiting seasoned tennis players, both from high school teams and from other universities. Along with beating the 20th ranked team in the nation, Goldin's highlight this past season was building the team’s chemistry and watching his players grow.

“Since this group came in already playing at a high level the next important aspect was establishing good team chemistry,” Goldin said.

This spring, he hopes to strengthen his player’s mental game strategies and ultimately make Wolves tennis a well-respected and recognized program.

“My long-term goal for the tennis program is to shape my players into strong, competitive athletes that can complete at an advanced level and make Stritch a ranked program, which will ultimately help bring in recruits for the future,” Goldin said.

Goldin's passion for tennis began at an early age.

“I started playing tennis with my dad when I was a child and my love for the game continued to grow throughout the years,” Goldin said.

In Goldin's early years you could find him practicing long hours at Nicolet High School where he played all four years of high school.

“This whole experience has come full circle for me that I have the ability to coach the first tennis team at Stritch and practice at Nicolet where I used to play when I was younger."